From Our Readers
Celibacy I have to take issue with the “Watching the World” item entitled “Celibacy—Why?” (September 22, 1999) You state that the Church’s argument “has no basis in the Scriptures.” In view of Matthew 19:10-12 and 1 Corinthians 7:8, 26, 27, I have to conclude that there is a basis for celibacy.
M. T., United States
It is true that the Bible recommends singleness as a desirable course for some. However, the Bible does not require that Christian ministers be celibate. The apostle Peter and other responsible men in the early Christian congregation were married men. (1 Corinthians 9:5; 1 Timothy 3:2) Therefore, compulsory celibacy has no basis in Scripture.—ED.
Superstition As a linguist, I must bring to your attention an error in the October 22, 1999, Awake! In the series “Superstitions—Why So Dangerous?” you inferred that the German word gesundheit is a way of saying “God bless you” when someone sneezes. The English translation of the word is “health.”
C. C., United States
We did not mean to imply that “gesundheit” was the exact translation of the English expression. It was listed, along with two other foreign-language expressions, as being “similar” in usage to the English expression “God bless you.”—ED.
Cystic Fibrosis I have just finished reading the article “Living With Cystic Fibrosis.” (October 22, 1999) I was moved by the way Jimmy Garatziotis copes with this terrible illness. His appreciation for his dear wife was also encouraging. I realize how much we take for granted—even our ability to breathe normally!
D. A., England
I do not have the same problem but suffer from pulmonary atresia and an interventricular defect. It was comforting for me to read this experience. I share Jimmy’s sentiments when he says that he would like to be able to run in the open fields, a desire that we hope to fulfill in the coming new world promised by God.
F. A., Italy
The Danube I want to thank you for the beautiful article “The Danube—If Only It Could Talk!” (October 22, 1999) When I was a little girl, I lived near the source of the Danube and came to love it. As a hydrologist, I get to explore rivers, and I feel that they are particularly marvelous creations of God.
D. O., Croatia
You said that the University of Vienna, founded in 1365, is the oldest in the German-speaking world. If you mean where German is spoken presently—Germany, Austria, and part of Switzerland—this statement is correct. However, the oldest German-language university was founded in 1348 in Prague, capital of today’s Czech Republic. At that time it belonged to Austria.
M. E., Germany
Actually, Prague was the capital of Bohemia. Though both German and Czech were spoken there, the official language of the university was Latin.—ED.
Shyness Thank you very much for the article “Young People Ask . . . Why Can’t I Be More Outgoing?” (October 22, 1999) This has been food at the proper time. I have suffered from shyness all my life. I am 17 years old and find it difficult to meet new people and associate with new ones at Christian gatherings. Because of this, I have missed out on many opportunities to widen out and enjoy association with the brothers and sisters. Your article has helped me to realize that shyness is common and that it is something I can overcome.
B. H., United States